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Future cities in the carbon-
constrained world
SHOBHAKAR DHAKAL
SCHOOL OF ENVIRONMENT RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT
ASIAN INST...
Role of cities in global GHG mitigation is
enormous
 71-76% of global CO2 emissions are
from energy use in cities (IPCC, ...
City emissions vary greatly- per capita CO2 emission
of 138 cities (330 mn population) ~ 2 Bn tCO2e
160 ~ 20 tCO2/capita 2...
10 ~ 5 tCO2/capita
Under 5 tCO2/capita
Under 3 tCO2/capita
City emissions vary greatly- per capita CO2 emission of 138 cit...
Emissions drivers
 Influenced by physical, economic and social
drivers specific to each city -No clear answer yet
on what...
Global urbanization trends
Within
city
Outside
city
66%
30%
54%
3.2 bn
2.46 bn 51% Asia
36% Africa
3.88 bn
6.34 bn
700 mn
...
Implications of urbanization
Urbanization-income nexus  higher urban incomes correlated with
higher energy and GHG emiss...
Infrastructure demands large emissions
Müller et al., 2013
> a third of the 2°C
emission budget by
2050 (1,000 GtCO2)
• Th...
Urgency and opportunities
of rapid urbanization -
China as an example
• 6-7 trillion $ investment
• Infrastructure lock-in...
Retrofitting/re-engineering existing cities
Enhancing the systemic efficiency
Hastening the infrastructural replacement ...
The key challenges to overcome
Need to go beyond Incremental change  to transformative
change
Overcoming the size, gove...
Key points
 Our ability to deep-cut global GHG depends, to a large extent, on what
kind of cities and towns we will build...
Thank you
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Future cities in the carbon-constrained world, SHOBHAKAR DHAKAL

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SHOBHAKAR DHAKAL (SCHOOL OF ENVIRONMENT RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, ASIAN INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY, THAILAND) at the Our Common Future Under Climate Change conference, July 7-10 in Paris, France.

More at http://www.commonfuture-paris2015.org/

Published in: Science
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Future cities in the carbon-constrained world, SHOBHAKAR DHAKAL

  1. 1. Future cities in the carbon- constrained world SHOBHAKAR DHAKAL SCHOOL OF ENVIRONMENT RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT ASIAN INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY, THAILAND International Scientific Conference 7-10 JULY 2015 Paris, France Plenary Highlight Talk, Morning 8 July 2015 shobhakar@ait.ac.th; Shobhakar.dhakal@gmail.com
  2. 2. Role of cities in global GHG mitigation is enormous  71-76% of global CO2 emissions are from energy use in cities (IPCC, 2014; GEA 2012) (some definitional complexities are there)  Consumption driven upstream emissions makes cities even more important–e.g. over two-times in Tokyo and London  Emissions and contribution of sources vary greatly across cities – direct comparison often does not tell us much - cities are different from nation states Prepared based on Carbonn Registry Minx et al. 2009, Economic Systems Research LONDON, 2004 Consumption CO2
  3. 3. City emissions vary greatly- per capita CO2 emission of 138 cities (330 mn population) ~ 2 Bn tCO2e 160 ~ 20 tCO2/capita 20 ~ 10 tCO2/capita A first hand compilation from multiple sources- work under progress, please do not cite
  4. 4. 10 ~ 5 tCO2/capita Under 5 tCO2/capita Under 3 tCO2/capita City emissions vary greatly- per capita CO2 emission of 138 cities ~ 2 Bn tCO2) A first hand compilation from multiple sources- work under progress, please do not cite
  5. 5. Emissions drivers  Influenced by physical, economic and social drivers specific to each city -No clear answer yet on what cluster of drivers provides a specific carbon outcome of cities  Individual technology drivers and activities are relatively better understood- but systemic factors and integrated effects of driver are less understood  Spatial drivers are important- especially the collective influence of different density, land-use mix, connectivity and accessibility Density is necessary but not sufficient condition for lowering urban emissions Manaugh and Kreider, 2013; IPCC 2014 Adapted from (Cheng, 2009), IPCC 2014 Higher density leads to less emissions (e.g. shorter distances travelled). Mixed land-use reduces emissions. Improved infrastructural density and design (e.g. streets) reduces emissions. Accessibility to people and places (jobs, housing, services, shopping) reduces emissions. Stephane, 2012; World Bank 20 tCO2/p, 2007 2.3 tCO2/p, 2007
  6. 6. Global urbanization trends Within city Outside city 66% 30% 54% 3.2 bn 2.46 bn 51% Asia 36% Africa 3.88 bn 6.34 bn 700 mn Source: UN DESA World Urbanization Prospects 2014 >10 mn city-agglomeration 1-5 mn city-agglomeration < 300 th city-agglomeration Urban land could expand up-to 3 time in 2000-30 55% of global land in 2030 is expected to be developed in 2000-30 Schneider et al., 2009; Angel et al., 2011; Seto et al., 2011, 2012
  7. 7. Implications of urbanization Urbanization-income nexus  higher urban incomes correlated with higher energy and GHG emissions (Poumanyvong and Kaneko, 2010; IPCC 2014, GEA 2012) Bottom up analyses show that Cities in non-Annex I countries have, generally, higher per capita final energy use and CO2 emissions than respective national averages – majority of new urbanization will be in non-Annex Source: GEA, 2012; Grubler et al., 2012; IPCC, 2014 Based on 254 cities final energy use Stochastic Impacts by Regression on Population, Affluence and Technology (STIRPAT) model and a sample of 88 countries for the period 1975–2005 Poumanyvong and Kaneko, 2010, Ecological Economics.
  8. 8. Infrastructure demands large emissions Müller et al., 2013 > a third of the 2°C emission budget by 2050 (1,000 GtCO2) • The existing infrastructure stock • Average Annex-I resident is 3 times that of the world average • About 5 times higher than average non- Annex I resident
  9. 9. Urgency and opportunities of rapid urbanization - China as an example • 6-7 trillion $ investment • Infrastructure lock-in Bai et al. 2014, Nature 1 6 0 | N AT U R E | VO L 5 0 9 | 8 M AY 2 0 1 4
  10. 10. Retrofitting/re-engineering existing cities Enhancing the systemic efficiency Hastening the infrastructural replacement cycles with green infrastructure Re-orienting public choices and consumption through sound incentives, policies and governance Developing an effective Climate Mitigation Action Plans in cities  Focused on energy efficiency and end-of-pipe solutions; aggregate impact of actions on urban emissions unclear No silver bullets for solutions - each city has to devise own local-specific responses IPCC, 2014
  11. 11. The key challenges to overcome Need to go beyond Incremental change  to transformative change Overcoming the size, governance and income dependency of mitigation solutions Deploying far-reaching market-based solutions coupled with planning, such as pricing Overcoming the governance paradox and policy fragmentations Smoothening the entry points: Demonstrating the best practice technologies and local co-benefits of urban-scale mitigation actions
  12. 12. Key points  Our ability to deep-cut global GHG depends, to a large extent, on what kind of cities and towns we will build and how urban dwellers embrace carbon mitigation  A large window of mitigation opportunities lie in guiding new urbanization in next 2-3 decades  Low carbon future cities must address GHG emission ‘within’ as well as ‘outside’ its physical boundaries  Larger opportunities in systemic and integrated mitigation solutions  must overcome governance and policy fragmentations  Role for science in providing solution-oriented knowledge is extremely important - IPCC, GEA, UCCRN’s ARC3 and others
  13. 13. Thank you

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